Tag Archives: snow

Zao Onsen Snowshoeing Weekend

First weekend of February is the festival weekend for Zao Onsen. The community celebrates it by shows and fireworks on Saturday night. A couple of friends, Jamie and I decided to go and see the festival and most of all see the snow monsters that are symbol of  Zao Onsen. Snow monsters are basically trees on top of the mountain covered with snow and frost all over that they look like monsters.

On both days, girls and I did snowshoe around the mountain. Jamie chose to snowboard. There are many trails throughout the beautiful forest around the ski trails. The conditions on this particular weekend was not very good as the snow was all frozen on top and the shoes did not get through the ice. But as a scenery and easiness of the trails, I think it was one of the most spectacular snowshoeing trips I’ve ever had.

We had saved our trek to everytrail. Please check both days’ treks. It would give you a nice idea of what we have done. I find this app really very useful while trekking. You need to keep an eye on your iPhone’s battery though. I would recommend turning it off while the app is working and carry a spare battery.

List of things useful while snowshoeing:

  • a pair of snowshoes – binding is really very important  ( I like my MSR Evos)
  •  a pair poles
  • goggles (for snow and wind protection)
  • good gloves – your hands freeze trying to put your snowshoes on!
  • a good hat (Nepalese hats with earmuffs are good.
  • thermos with hot water
  • hot chocolate pouch
  • biscuits
  • big bottle of water
  • small hand towel
  • tissues
  • little waterproof backpack
  • a couple of small ziplock bags (for left over food)
  • a spare pair of socks and a tshirt (put them in a plastic bag)

Day 1
Zao Snowshoeing at EveryTrail

Day 2
Zao snowmonsters snowshoeing at EveryTrail

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Kagura Snowshoeing

One day trip to Kagura… Wake up early in the morning, jump on a shinkansen, head to the mountains…
Madeline and I snowshoed where as others in our group snowboarded al day. At the end of the day, we have ended up in this cute antique house for a cup of coffee and an unusually long and warm chat.
What can I say, lucky day!

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Tsugaike Kogen Snowshoeing

Another weekend in snow, snowshoeing in Tsugaike Kogen, Nagano. The day before we started this hike we met a couple of snowshoers on their way back and asked if they would give us any tips about the area and asked if they had any maps. They generously shared their experience and gifted us their own trail map. We followed their map and had a wonderful day up on the mountain tops with beautiful blue skies and sun. And this time Kate recorded the trail on Everytrail App on her iPhone.

We walked for 4hrs.16min, had a hot chocolate and lunch stop on our way. The view of the mountains were spectacular.

Tsugaike Kogen Snowshoeing Trail Map

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